Why they give: A passion to improve society and “pay back, pay forward”
Alumnus Michael Bond, who earned an accounting degree in 1977 and is a successful New York City corporate attorney, became the newest donor to endow a Carolina Scholar award through his gift of $250,000. Originally from Seneca, S.C., where his parents still reside, Bond named the award in their honor: the William H. and Ruth C. Bond Scholarship. A deserving student will receive the scholarship this academic year. Carolina Scholar recipients enter Carolina with the highest college entrance examination scores and academic standings from their respective high schools, and are automatically accepted into the Honors College.
“The point I would like to make is that the state of South Carolina, and the University of South Carolina, have given me a great opportunity to achieve what I’m accomplishing in my life,” Bond said. “This gift is a chance to give back by providing a blessing to others, my parents, and highly deserving students.”
More than 100 students are expected to enter the University this fall through opportunity provided by the Gamecock Guarantee. In its second year, the Gamecock Guarantee ensures that students with the classroom ability to attend South Carolina -- but with limited ability to pay -- will receive a University education. While the Southeastern Conference contract with ESPN and the University’s General Scholarship Funds pay for the Gamecock Guarantee, a small but determined group of donors put their private support behind it.
“When Carolina makes a financial commitment to ensure that all students with academic promise can attend this great University, including those who face significant economic challenges, that is something I wholeheartedly support,” said Stacey Bradley, associate vice president for the Division of Student Affairs and Department of Academic Support. “The reason I give to the Gamecock Guarantee is its ability to provide a University of South Carolina education to students who otherwise could not afford it.”
Tom and Sherrill Hall of Anderson, S.C., provided a significant bequest to the Darla Moore School of Business as part of the Moore School match effort. The Halls firmly believe that the University provided the educations that led to professional success, and that is why they give back. Tom, a 1969 business graduate, became a successful banker, while Sherrill, who earned a degree in psychology in 1968, enjoyed a long career as an elementary gifted program teacher. In addition to their bequest, they also provide the University with a scholarship for Anderson County students; give to charitable causes through a donor-advised fund; and contribute to the Dean’s Circle at the Darla Moore School of Business.
“We realize now more than ever just how valuable our educations were at Carolina,” Sherrill said. “We are very proud of the accomplishments at the Darla Moore School of Business and how it has grown, just as we are proud of the University’s accomplishments overall. Our efforts to give back to the University also give us a way to stay involved.”
Concerned that young journalists need to amplify their abilities to cover business news including the financial markets, 1949 journalism graduate Ken Baldwin created the Baldwin Business and Financial Journalism Endowment Fund for just that purpose. The $500,000 gift benefits the School of Journalism and Mass Communications by funding research initiatives, symposia, visiting lecturers, and other endeavors. Baldwin, who was a reporter early in his career but spent most of it as a personnel manager with Landmark Communications, said the University gave him the core skills from which to build a profession.
“What I learned from English Professor Havilah Babcock, I have used throughout my life,” Baldwin said. “I’ve been very blessed, in particular by the growth and success of Landmark and The Weather Channel. Journalists today need business savvy and must have the tenacity to ask the right questions and dig deeper in filling their watchdog role.”